James Harrison Wilson Thompson -- Grandfather

Thompson was named after his maternal grandfather - James Harrison Wilson, a US. Civil War general whose post-war career took him to countries around the world. As a result of his travels, the family was introduced to the world of Siam, as Thailand was then known.


Wilson went to England as President Cleveland's representative at the wedding of the future King George V and Princess Mary of Teck. While there, he met the Siamese Crown Prince, Vajiravudh (later crowned King Rama VI), son of Chulalongkorn, son of King Mongkut (Rama IV).

Chulalongkorn was the young prince whom legendary Anna came to teach in the King and I.

A few years later, when Prince Vajiravudh made an official tour of the United States, a request was sent out to General Wilson to act as his guide.

King Chulalongkorn or Rama V

A garden party was held at the Thompson's country home near Greenville, and photographs of the Prince were taken.

Thompson was not yet born but later as a child, he enjoyed looking at the faded pictures and listening to stories told of the garden party for the future King Rama VI of Siam.



Mahjong gaming tables


Forty years later, Thompson acquired a pair of ornate, antique (Mahjong) gaming tables from the former palace. The tables were originally presented as gifts to King Chulalongkorn and bear the Royal Insignia of Rama V engraved in gold.